Dental crowns are used when a cavity threatens the health of a tooth or to protect otherwise broken or cracked teeth. As technology evolves, computers are playing a greater role in the design and manufacture of crowns. The material used is also constantly evolving, all of which improves the quality of treatment received by the patient.
What are crowns made from?
Most crowns are made from ‘porcelain bonded to a precious metal’. A base of precious metal is initially made in this case and then the porcelain is applied over it in layers. On occasions, the crown is made solely from porcelain. This is often viewed as the most aesthetically pleasing option, but is not always the most suitable. The advent of CAD (computer-aided design) dentistry in recent years, in Leeds and the rest of the UK, has meant that far more of the original tooth can be left intact using porcelain caps.
On the other hand, crowns made from an alloy of metal and porcelain can show dark gum lines over time, which are less aesthetically attractive. Your dentist will examine each case to work out the most appropriate treatment for your situation.
It is also possible to get a crown made from full gold. This is not to everyone’s taste, but has the advantage of strength. Due to their popularity among some celebrities, gold crowns have achieved a certain ‘bling’ aesthetic credibility, which is unlikely to attract more conservatively minded patients.
When is a crown used?
Crowns should be used when the strength of the tooth is compromised, as the latter restorations only work when the tooth is strong enough to support the additions. The important thing to bear in mind when having a tooth crowned is getting the right mix of aesthetic and practical application. Clearly, the former aspect can depend on an individual’s taste but with the latter point it may be best to take your dentist’s advice on what’s best.